Toy Story Takes Hong Kong Disneyland to First Profit

Hong Kong Disneyland had its first profit in the seven years since it opened as attractions such as Toy Story and Grizzly Gulch helped draw mainland Chinese visitors to the theme park.

The venture between Walt Disney Co. and the city’s government, made a profit of HK$109 million ($14 million) in the year ended September, compared with a loss of HK$237 million a year earlier, according to a statement yesterday. Walt Disney owns 48 percent of the park and the Hong Kong government holds 52 percent.

Hong Kong Disneyland has been adding attractions to woo visitors from government-owned Ocean Park and to benefit from an increase in tourists from mainland China. It is still assessing the scale and timing for further expansion.

“We are still negotiating with all the shareholders,” Managing Director Andrew Kam said at a press conference. “The expansion is a matter of when, how and what scale.”

Fiscal-year sales rose 18 percent to HK$4.27 billion, according to the statement. Attendance climbed 13 percent to 6.73 million.

China Visitors

Hong Kong Disneyland, which opened in September 2005, has also had to contend with the local Ocean Park, which had 7.1 million visitors in the fiscal year that ended in June, a 20 percent jump from a year ago. Ocean Park’s earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization, or Ebitda, rose 49 percent to HK$505.4 million for the fiscal year and overall revenue reached HK$1.6 billion.

Both have benefited from visitors from China’s mainland.

Total visitor arrivals to the former British colony rose 16 percent to 43.8 million for the first 11 months in 2012, with the number of tourists from the mainland climbing 24 percent to 31.4 million, according to provisional figures from the Hong Kong Tourism Board. Mainland visitors accounted for nearly 72 percent of the city’s total number of tourists.

Walt Disney, the world’s largest entertainment company, this month posted first-quarter earnings that beat analysts’ estimates as the interactive unit registered its first profit and new theme-park attractions drew more visitors.

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